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Energy-efficient cars: Chevrolet Volt

8 energy-efficient cars to go the distance
Chevrolet Volt
  • Chevrolet Volt

  • Mpge: 58 city/62 highway

Starting at $39,145, the Chevy Volt no longer comes with the navigation and Bose audio systems as standard equipment. It's a plug-in hybrid vehicle that qualifies for federal tax savings up to $7,500 on energy-efficient cars.

As a plug-in hybrid, the Volt comes with two sources of energy. The primary power source comes from a 16-kilowatt-hour, lithium-ion battery pack, which powers the electric motor. When the battery is almost depleted, the 1.4-liter, four-cylinder gasoline engine kicks in, using premium gas.

The EPA ranks this vehicle by combining the mpg of the gas engine with the mpge of the electric motor. It comes out at a combined 60 mpge. According to EPA estimates, you'll go 35 miles on just the battery and 380 miles with a full tank of gas.

Regenerative braking and the engine generator will partly recharge the battery, but to get a full charge you'll need to plug in the vehicle. With the 120-volt charger, you'll get a full charge in about 10 hours, according to Chevy. With the 240-volt charging station, you'll have a fully charged Volt in around four hours.


 

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